Each congregation has a vital role in a proposal for a New Era of Unitarian Universalism. The proposal is to merge three districts in the geographic center of the U.S. (Central Midwest, Heartland, and Prairie Star) into one MidAmerica Region.
In the mid 1960s the U.S. was divided into UUA administrative districts. The district boundaries were created for ease of travel at that time. Central Midwest and Heartland Districts include Wisconsin, Illinois, most of Missouri, Michigan, Indiana, part of Ohio, and Kentucky. Prairie Star District covers Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, and parts of Wisconsin and Missouri.
Each of the current 19 districts has paid staff who provide services to congregations in their district. Services include assistance with growing membership, training local leaders, finding ministers, and religious education programs. Funding for each district comes from the UUA (Unitarian Universalist Association) and local congregations. Each district is governed by an elected Board of Trustees. The current UUA Board includes a trustee elected from each district.
How Decisions are Made
Each district holds an Annual Meeting/Assembly where delegates vote to elect their Board of Trustees and make other decisions. Each congregation identifies delegates to represent them. Each district has bylaws that define the parameters that congregations must meet in order to send delegates, for example paying district dues.
Vital Role Vote
The next district Annual Meetings/Assemblies are in April 2013. Each congregation’s delegates need to be prepared for their vital vote on merging their district into the MidAmerica Region, dissolving the earlier districts. This merger is referred to as “regionalization.”
Advantages of Regionalization
Administrative efficiencies are the obvious reasons for regionalization. But there are other major advantages: promoting our UU presence; strengthening collaborative partnerships, and fostering membership growth. You will receive in-depth information about these advantages in future documents from the Regionalization Communications Committee.
Central Midwest: Suzie DeBeers, Vera Dowell;
Heartland: Susan French, Kathy Silver;
Prairie Star: Graham Kreicker, Charlotte Preston, Vicki Pratt